11/17/2011 2:30PM

Los Alamitos: Freaky's newest trainer hopeful of qualifying for Champion of Champions


Freaky, the 2009 Quarter Horse World Champion, is the most prominent of 14 entrants in two time trials on Saturday that will complete the field for the $750,000 Champion of Champions at Los Alamitos on Dec. 10.

But the 6-year-old Freaky will start after a recent controversy.

Freaky won the Grade 1 Go Man Go Handicap at Los Alamitos on Sept. 11 for his first major win of 2011, but was subsequently disqualified for testing in excess of the permitted level of the bronchial dilator clenbuterol.

Owned by Armando Aguirre, Freaky was trained at the time by Sergio Fiscal, and was later transferred to Paul Jones, the nation’s leading Quarter Horse trainer. Jones is Freaky’s fifth trainer of record this year.

Earlier this month, Jones feared that the circumstances surrounding the Go Man Go Handicap would lead Los Alamitos officials to exclude Freaky from starting in Saturday’s trials. Freaky has been allowed to start, and drew post 4 in the seven-runner second division.

“I’m just happy to be able to have him in the race and get a chance to run,” Jones said on Wednesday. “He’s doing really great. I hope he gets a good clean race. If he can get a clean race, I think he can beat them.”

At least one berth is available from Saturday’s 400-yard trials for the Champion of Champions, to the horse with the fastest time in the two divisions. Through the year, the winners of nine major stakes in California, Oklahoma, New Mexico, and Texas earned automatic berths to the Champion of Champions. If any defections occur from that list, the horses with the next fastest times in the trials would be granted invitations to the 440-yard race next month.

One prominent Los Alamitos trainer is not represented in the trials. Adan Farias, who trained Freaky in 2009 and until February of this year, has had four horses previously in his care transferred to Francisco Ramirez, who is also the ranch trainer at Vessels Stallion Farm, near San Diego.

Wednesday, Farias did not return a phone call seeking comment on why he is not training. Through a spokesman, Los Alamitos track owner Ed Allred declined to comment on the trainer’s status. California Horse Racing Board officials also declined to comment on Wednesday.

Through Wednesday, Farias ranked fourth in the nation with $1.9 million in stable earnings this year. Jones led all trainers with $3.8 million.

Ramirez said on Wednesday that he expects to add 30 to 40 horses previously trained by Farias to his stable, which will be split between the racetrack and Vessels. Ramirez said he has not spoken to Farias.

“I don’t know what the main reason is he’s not there anymore,” he said.

Aside from Freaky, prominent horses in the trials include Chivalry Sr, the winner of the Spencer Childers Handicap in July, in the first division, and T Gold J, the winner of the AQHA Challenge Derby, in the second trial. Both were formerly trained by Farias, and are now with Ramirez.